Naomi Watts, who will be playing Princess Diana in an upcoming biopic, has said that she is worried about how her two sons, Princes William and Harry, will react to her portrayal.
“The biggest reason that made me pause was how the princes were going to be feel about this,” Watt said. “There was actually quite an eerie moment in London when I did see Prince William in a restaurant, and I got very nervous, because if I caught his eye I didn’t want to interpret a look and think he had a negative feeling about this idea, so I made sure not to look.”
The actress added, “I do care deeply about how the princes feel, of course. I am a mum of two boys. But it was a story that was bound to be told at some point, and it’s possibly fresher than people expected.”
The 44-year-old had actually turned down the role twice before finally agreeing the third time.
“I was a little bit torn, but once I’d said no, I wasn’t completely at peace. Sometimes when you say no, you feel free, but it just wasn’t the case,” she said.
“There was something very intriguing about this woman’s life. It was extraordinary. She always lived a privileged life, but there was nothing ordinary about the construct she moved into,” Watts added. “I liked the idea that there was this fame – no one at that level can really survive it, I think.”
Diana focuses on the last two years of her life, after her divorce from Prince Charles. The screenplay is based on the 2001 book Diana: Her Last Love by Kate Snell. The film co-stars Naveen Andrews as heart surgeon Dr. Hasnat Khan and Cas Anvar as billionaire Dodi Fayed, with whom Diana died in a car crash in 1997. The film is scheduled to be released November 1.
The real Hasnat Khan has spoken out against the film, calling it a “complete lie” and saying he never gave his approval. He said Snell’s book is based on gossip and that the mannerisms portrayed in the film does not reflect the way he was with Diana.
“There wasn’t any hierarchy in our relationship,” Khan said. “She wasn’t a princess and I wasn’t a doctor.”